In “Montessori Builds Innovators,” a blog post on the Harvard Business Review website, Andrew McAfee recently weighed in on the “Montessori Mafia” theory posed by Peter Sims in the Wall Street Journal. McAfee is a principal research scientist at the Center for Digital Business in the MIT Sloan School of Management.
McAfee begins by saying “There are strident disagreements these days over every aspect of American educational policy, except for one. Everyone thinks it would be great if we could better teach students how to innovate.”
Remembering his own Montessori school experience, McAfee wrote about how plentiful opportunities for discovery, in tandem with hands-on Montessori materials, provided the perfect formula for impressionable learning.
No matter how young you are, after you see five beads on a wire next to 25 arranged in a square and 125 in a cube, you have a grasp of 5^2 and 5^3 that doesn’t leave you. And after you hold the five-cube in one hand and the ten-cube in another, the power of taking something to the third power becomes very real. One is eight times as heavy as the other!
We encourage you to read the full post, which concludes with McAfee saying, “The main thing I learned there [at Montessori school] is that the world is a really interesting place, and one that should be explored. Can there be any better foundation for an innovator in training?”
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